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Recap / Mr Robot S 03 E 01

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Often I think these sad old tropes are whistling in the dark...

  • Adult Fear: Being abused and gaslighted by your boyfriend/girlfriend. Especially the one whom you knew for a long time.
  • Bavarian Fire Drill: Passing himself off as a concerned law enforcement detective, Irving manages to disable an FBI tail in pursuit by bluffing the vehicle security technician into doing it for him remotely.
  • Book-Ends: The boulevard where the street lights are going out is the same one that the bus takes Angela and Mr. Robot through in the ending, with the same street lights coming back on as they pass.
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  • Call-Back: Elliot directly references his infamous "fuck society" monologue from season one to rather comically emphasize just how efficiently he has done that.
    Elliot: "Yeah, well, I fucked society, alright.
  • Chekhov's Gun: The syringe that Angela packs away. Three episodes pass before we see it put to use.
  • Continuity Nod: The stress of being followed by an organized criminal syndicate that assassinated her boyfriend sends Darlene into a panic attack.
  • Double-Meaning Title: "eps3.0power-saver-mode.h" references both the theme of the episode as well as the rolling blackouts.
  • Does This Remind You of Anything?: When Mr. Robot appears to Angela, the ambient light from the fireplace not only gives him a sinister, red complexion, but the shadows from his glasses align on his forehead to mimic devil horns. The entire scene even plays out like a dramatic monster reveal.
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  • Domestic Abuse: Angela begins doing this to Elliot to promote Stage 2.
  • Driving Question: The trend-setter: just what is Whiterose planning?
  • For Your Own Good: How Angela justifies her ill-treatment of Elliot.
  • Gothic Horror: The episode is rather dark and ominous, with Mr. Robot's return being presented as an occurrence of mythical proportions, the phantasmagorical direction, and plentiful amount of symbolism.
  • He’s Back: Mr. Robot reemerging to communicate with Angela.
  • Implied Death Threat: A not-so-subtle one from Irving:
    Irving: "You know that bullet we took out of you? We can easily put it right back in."
  • It's All My Fault: The utterly fractured state of the world is not lost on Elliot as he laments over being its true architect.
  • Keeping the Enemy Close: How Angela tries to stay ahead of Elliot's campaign to shut down stage two.
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  • Leaning on the Fourth Wall: Elliot "muting" the rowdy hacker tournament.
  • Liberty Over Prosperity: As he debunks his own revolution, Elliot considers this trope was a major flaw in the plan.
  • Manipulative Bastard: Angela, having learned how to detect Mr. Robot's presence, actively uses Elliot's mental condition against him to promote stage two.
  • The Oner: Elliot and Darlene's entrance to the hacker tournament is directed as a single take.
  • Psycho Party Member: The ending removes any doubt that Angela is mentally compromised.
  • Real After All: Even after being shot, it takes a while for Elliot to grasp that Tyrell is still alive.
  • Reality Ensues: Because they have been monitoring him, the Dark Army interferes with Elliot's first attempt to sabotage stage two.
  • The Only One I Trust: Elliot contacts Angela and requests that she be his guardian against Mr. Robot, reasoning that he considers her to be the most reliable person in his life at the moment. Unfortunately, this trust is misplaced.
  • Refuge in Audacity: The monologue by Elliot is essentially "fuck society 2.0", but even more coarse and scathing. Justified in that this monologue is also internal.
  • Running Gag: Josh Groban strikes again when Elliot requires a shirt before venturing out to the Confictura Industries warehouse.
  • Spanner in the Works: Discussed as part of a plan by Elliot to thwart stage two. He asks Angela to get him a job at E Corp so he can have direct access to their network.
  • Tempting Fate: Elliot is all too easily betrayed by his own optimism when he puts forth the notion that Mr. Robot "died" from the gunshot wound and his malignancy is now destroyed. The truth is worse, and only makes the entire situation much direr.
  • Took a Level in Jerkass: Angela.
  • Wham Episode: Angela, Tyrell, and Mr. Robot are working together to finish stage two. Tragically, Elliot is unaware.
  • Wham Shot: Mr. Robot coming out of the darkness as Angela approaches.
  • Woobie, Destroyer of Worlds: Angela is slowly being fashioned into one via extensive brainwashing by Whiterose. Elliot, on the other hand, accepts full responsibility as one.

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